12 tips to develop leadership skills for new managers

“What got you here won’t get you there” Marshall Goldsmith 

In my work with new and emerging leaders it is imperative that we quickly focus on developing a successful and authentic leadership approach. 

As a newly appointed leader, we face a challenge to deliver through others whilst learning the leadership skills and expectations in the new role. Taking the time to work out who you want to be as a leader is where coaching can be so valuable.

Often our leadership style is formed from the leaders we have been exposed to, and we take the greatest parts of them to emulate. We can also look at the approaches of prominent successful leaders whether that is Bill Gates, Phil Knight or someone else of your choice, who share their wisdom through podcasts and books. 

Through many years of coaching in a variety of sectors with a multitude of leaders I see there are some key focus areas and leadership skills to master:

  1. From books to development programmes to podcasts absorb yourself in the different leadership theories. 
  2. Obtain feedback regularly from those you work with either formally or informally. 
  3. Build time in the diary every week to reflect on your approach so that you can adjust and learn from situations. 
  4. Develop your communication skills so that you speak with clarity, honesty and authenticity. 
  5. Pro-actively develop and articulate a leadership approach that works for you and is who you really are i.e. authentic. 
  6. Be clear with your team what your management style is – one client shared their leadership approach as a visual to their team as a way of articulating what they expected.
  7. Build a support network – including other new managers, a mentor, line manager and coach and a “best friend at work”.
  8. Align with your own leaders’ vision.
  9. Establish how best to motivate each team member. 
  10. Adapt your style to the person and situation whilst maintaining authenticity. 
  11. Obtain clarity on your personal, career, team and business vision.
  12. Many corporate organisations offer a leadership programme which gives a great injection of the skills of leadership specific to the organisation so take full advantage of this. 

It can be useful to consider these key coaching questions as you step in to a leadership role:

  • What do you need to let go of to be the leader you want to be?
  • Who do you respect as a leader and why?
  • How can you create time to work on you as well as the team and business goals?
  • What is your own leadership vision?

Developing your leadership skills and approach in a systematic, thoughtful and measured way is key to quickly making an impact. 

If you would like to experience the benefits of coaching, we work with lots of new and emerging leaders who want to quickly make an impact. Visit our website to find out more about your leadership development programmes and get in touch if you have any questions for me, or to arrange a no obligation consultation.

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